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View Full Version : The New Guys Vs The Old Guys (which should i choose??)



Punkmati
11-06-2007, 07:27 AM
Hi, I'm looking for a camera for shooting short films (I'm a beginner), so i don't know what to do, in the one hand there are the brand new HD camcorders (like Canon HV20) around $1000-$1300, and on the other hand there are old semi-professional camcorders (like Sony PD170 or 150) pre-owned around $1300-$1600. What should i choose? I'm a beginner but i want the best quality i can afford. Thanks guys.

princigalli
11-07-2007, 06:29 AM
pd 170 is history. you can't compare those ancient SD interlaced cameras to the powerful Canon HV20. It's High def, progressive scan, 1/2.7 cmos...

Huy Vu
11-07-2007, 01:59 PM
pd 170 is history. you can't compare those ancient SD interlaced cameras to the powerful Canon HV20. It's High def, progressive scan, 1/2.7 cmos...

Depends on what he plans to do with it. PD170 maybe interlaced, but so is the HV20 unless you take the time to manually remove those pulldown frames. Want to film live events with low lights? The PD170 beats the crap out of the HV20. In fact, just a week ago I had a PD170 shooting a show side by side with an XH-A1 and the PD170 delivers better color under low light conditions. I suspect the HV20 would lag even further behind with more noise. Ask yourself what you need a camera for first before making your choice.

William_Robinette
11-07-2007, 02:12 PM
Yes, and lest not forget those oh so useful fully manual controls and the proper buttons for them.

Punkmati
11-08-2007, 12:54 PM
I want to learn making short films, so I need a camera that helps me to improve my self (in a technical way). I prefer less image quality but more learning about things I'll able to use in the future with a pro camcorder.

Jeff Anderson
11-08-2007, 01:11 PM
sounds to me like you just answered your own question. I'd look for a dv camera with manual controls. 24P on the DVX is nice but its not as cheap as a pd170. If I remember right isnt the 150 or 170 what morgan spurlock has used in alot of his work?

Punkmati
11-08-2007, 02:03 PM
yeah he used the 150 for "Super Size Me". I started to love the HV20 for its quality, but thinking deeply it's not the best choice for my needs. Also after reading some articles about CMOS technology it's not convincing me at all. It has lots of problems.

ProfessorU
11-19-2007, 12:11 AM
If you use a old pro camera, it will look and act a lot like the new pro cameras. If you use a new consumer cam, it will not look or act much like anything, and will usually think it's smarter than you, making things like manual focus and exposure difficult. If you're serious about the field you'll learn more with a betacam than with a HV20.

someday
01-17-2008, 08:12 AM
HV20, which happens to be the best consumer HD camera, used by pros too.

ChrisForbes
01-17-2008, 09:05 AM
I had a JVC DV500 and that taught me more about pro cameras than any of my previous prosumer models. Look for something with a manual lens. There are no pro cameras with auto-focus. Just my 2 cents.

Zack Birlew
01-18-2008, 11:02 PM
Look, did anyone say the HV20 or XHA1 were low light cameras? No. They're marketed more for digital cinema use. Filmmakers use light. If you want to film weddings or do live event work, yeah, a low light camera like the Sony VX2100 or PD170 would be just fine for you. I find it funny how you'll bash the HV20 for having to take time out to pull the frames out from 24p but what do you think is going to happen when you try to convert your 60i footage from a PD170 to 24p with Magic Bullet or DVFilmmaker or some other plug-in?

I know a student filmmaker who is really snobby with his VX2100 saying things like "Oh, you've got HD? Your shoots must take forever! They need so much light! My camera doesn't need any light at all!" But then he shows his dailies in class and his images look so bad by comparison to my HV20 footage and everyone else's school-owned DVX100 stuff.

Quality is another issue. You're going to compare a 4:3 SD camera, a non-24p one at that, to an HV20 or even an XHA1 which is 1080i with 24p modes, native widescreen, and much better color reproduction and control (XHA1)? I realize you're just beginning but I think you're looking at things the wrong way. Yes, I would love it if I didn't have to light a thing, sometimes I can get away with that depending on the shot and that natural or practical light at the time. However, unless you're going with a RED, which can go very low light at 4K no less, but is very expensive, then there's just going to have to be some compromise.

I guess what I'm saying overall is that for filmmaking, today, you don't want to spend all that money on the wrong tool for the job. At the VERY LEAST you should be looking at XHA1 for filmmaking purposes. An HV20 works too, you shouldn't knock it until you've tried it especially for the price, but if you can't deal with the rolling shutter issue with CMOS and the weak low light performance, then by all means look to the XHA1 as the next step.

Konrad
04-07-2008, 10:53 PM
Why not wait a week? Panny is billing the HMC-150 as the "HD" DVX. Best guess on price will have it within a couple c notes of the Canon A1.

Mister Stocks
05-21-2008, 12:14 AM
If your goal is to learn, I would go with the old guys. HD is cool and all, but if you want to learn, the manual controls on the old semi-pro stuff will teach you more about getting the looks you want.

The Sarlacc
05-21-2008, 11:20 AM
HV20, which happens to be the best consumer HD camera, used by pros too.

Yes, and it frustrates us to no end.

I just shot a short for a friend using an HV20 with a Brevis adapter.

With smaller comsumer models you are STUCK with their limitations. Which is basically a lack of any true finite control. Sure, you can work around it some degree but then you get into that one situation and boom, youre screwed.

I would not actively choose to shoot anything with a consumer camera.

As for the PD....old school work horse, but I cant even stand holding them anymore, ugh.

Look for a used Panasonic DVX100 if you go this route.

ProfessorU
05-21-2008, 01:46 PM
This thread just wont die!:P
Brevis on an HV20? That's like strapping a rocket engine to a Chevy Nova.

If you're going to buy a SD camera, I'd suggest Beta if you want to learn about lenses, wb, focus, etc. Check eBay.

The Sarlacc
05-21-2008, 04:37 PM
This thread just wont die!:P
Brevis on an HV20? That's like strapping a rocket engine to a Chevy Nova.

If you're going to buy a SD camera, I'd suggest Beta if you want to learn about lenses, wb, focus, etc. Check eBay.


Beta? Why dont you just tell him to run out and find an old tube camera...

Brevis makes a hook up for the HV20, and as much as I don't love consumer cameras, for what it is it happens to look pretty good.

ProfessorU
05-21-2008, 06:29 PM
Don't get me wrong. I'd love to strap a rocket engine to a Chevy Nova. I just don't think that's the best way to learn.

The Sarlacc
05-21-2008, 06:46 PM
Don't get me wrong. I'd love to strap a rocket engine to a Chevy Nova. I just don't think that's the best way to learn.

Nor did I advocate it.

I said to go for the DVX100.

Adam J McKay
05-22-2008, 01:02 AM
I have to say go with the DVX as well. I bought both mine used for 1500 each. I personally would take a dvx over a hv20 any day, hell I would take a dvx over an xh-a1, as a matter of fact I sold my xh-a1 to get my dvx. WHY? Because I had enough of canon's frame mode crap, lack of 720p and the render times. I also dont plan on blowing up to film or screening anything on an hd projector. Go with a dvx if you can find one and avoid something like the GL2. Learn how to use the dvx make some films and when the new line of hd stuff comes out, IE HMC, SCARLETT, then go hd. Resolution isnt everything. Tell a good story and it wont matter what it was shot on.

Blair witch project.
Say what you must, but that movie was huge success and they used really crappy handy cams. So buy a camera and shoot something.
If only I took my own advice.